All grant applicants presented to the Executive Committee during the meeting. The Chairman reminded members that the total overall grant budget for the year 2021/2022 (which includes minor grants and the community grant fund) is £54,000 with £41,000 of that allocated for major grant aid. The total amount of major grant aid being requested for the 2021/2022 year from applicants amounts to £47,000. The total amount awarded at the meeting equated to £41,000. All members fully supported each grant applicant.
Cllr Andy Tree (Leader of Council & Chairman of Executive Committee) said:
"Last month (at Executive Committee in Jan 2021) we made it Town Council Policy as part of our four year strategic plan to maintain our overall grant aid budget at £54,000 per annum, with £41,000 being allocated to major grant aid. Major grant aid applications are reviewed once a year by our Executive Committee and we were very pleased to have all four applicants present to us remotely via zoom. We are very happy to have supported these valuable local organisations, who serve our local community, especially during the covid-19 pandemic. We stayed within our budget and provided almost 90% (87.2%) of what each applicant requested, against the backdrop of having a smaller council tax increase (our town council ‘precept’ share of council tax) than the previous year, further demonstrating our financial astuteness and probity as a town council."
Curtis Bone (Chairman of Whitehill & Bordon Community Association) said: "After a hard year for community venues, Whitehill & Bordon Community Association really appreciate the support given by Whitehill Town Council. The funding not only helps us to continue through these difficult times but also puts us in a strong position to reopen as soon as we can. We have big plans for the Centre, some big news coming and look out for exciting entertainment announcements throughout the year, the funding allows us to push forward with these."
Angela Small (Family Coordinator for Home-Start Hampshire) said: "We have continued to adjust how we work with families since last March with the different restrictions placed on us. We have completed remote training sessions for new volunteers and interestingly with the current situation we have had a lot more people express an interest in volunteering which is fantastic. Families have been offered one to one distanced walks, phone support or zoom, whatever works for them, especially if they have been trying to home school. Our family group in Bordon, before this lockdown and after the first lockdown made a decision to meet in the Hogmoor Inclosure or the Bordon Inclosure come rain or shine and this was greatly appreciated by the families who attended."
Rob AIlerston (Director of the Phoenix Theatre & Arts Centre) said: "The darkest of times for the Arts I’m delighted and excited by the faith Whitehill Town Council has shown with their awarding of a Major Grant last night. The Phoenix Theatre & Arts Centre is the creative heart for the community of Whitehill & Bordon, and with issue-based projects in the pipeline to combat poor mental health, isolation and domestic abuse, it’s clear we’re more than just a preferred venue for famous comedians."
Helen Drake (Chief Executive of Citizens Advice East Hampshire) said: "Citizens Advice in Whitehill and Bordon gives thanks to Whitehill Town Council for their grant this year. Every penny and pound of this will help us support local Whitehill and Bordon residents with the problems they may face over the coming challenging year as we come out of the Covid pandemic - whether dealing with redundancy, balancing their finances to afford to pay rent, bills and buy food and claiming benefits, perhaps for the first time. We urge local residents who have any practical problem such as these to get in touch with us - all details are on our website https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/east-hampshire/ "